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Casting in Java, why?

Posted on 2013-05-19
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Last Modified: 2013-05-20
Hello Experts,

This is what I expect to be a 'noob' question, but I cannot figure out why I need to Cast this object.  I have a button in my Android app and apparently have to Cast the object...why?  Code below:
Button b = (Button) findViewById(R.id.button1);

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FYI...I'm following a tutorial on Lynda.com and this was mentioned as important.  I would really appreciate any help to understand 'why' it needs to be Cast as a button when it IS a button already and b was type cast as a button too.

Thank you.
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Question by:Modifier1000
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Expert Comment

by:ksivananth
ID: 39180229
though the actual view is a button, the return type of findViewById is different than Button.
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Beneford earned 500 total points
ID: 39180235
findViewById() is actually returning a View object (a Button is a subclass of TextView which is a subclass of View)
You know that the View returned is a Button, but the Java sysem can't work that out just by looking at the source code. The type check system tries to stop you doing things that aren't going to work (very useful most of the time), and the cast is how you tell the type check system that you really do know what's going on.
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Author Closing Comment

by:Modifier1000
ID: 39181111
Thank you for the explanation, very helpful in giving more depth to your answer.
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